The New York Islanders can expect to be in more than a few 2-1 games during the 2019-20 season. On Friday night they were on the wrong end of a low-scoring decision and are looking to bounce back against the Winnipeg Jets on Sunday night at NYCB Live.
Sunday's game pits a defensively-minded Islanders team against a run-and-gun Jets squad, as Winnipeg has been involved in a pair of high-scoring contests, a 6-4 loss to the New York Rangers and a 5-4 shootout win over the New Jersey Devils. It'll be a clash of styles. Let's get down to business.
- UPDATE: Thomas Greiss was the first goalie off the ice at Sunday's optional morning skate, suggesting he'll start - and make his season debut - vs the Jets.
Trotz said it was "critical" to get both of his goalies work early in the season. Last season Greiss went 23-14-2 with a 2.28 GAA, .927 SV% and five shutouts.
- The Islanders opened their season with a 2-1 loss to the Washington Capitals on Friday night. Devon Toews scored the lone goal for the Islanders, while Semyon Varlamov made 26 saves in his debut in blue and orange.
- Barry Trotz will coach his 1,608th NHL game on Sunday, taking sole possession of third place on the league's all-time games coached list. Trotz is currently tied for third with legendary Islanders coach Al Arbour. Trotz passed Arbour on the NHL's all-time coaching wins list last season.
- The Islanders have split their season series with Winnipeg in each of past three seasons. The Isles won the most recent meeting on March 29th in Winnipeg, scoring the tying and winning goals in the final two minutes of a 5-4 comeback win.
- Noah Dobson was a healthy scratch for Friday's game, so if he gets in the lineup for Sunday, he would be making his NHL debut. UPDATE: Dobson stayed on for extra work on Sunday - along with Tom Kuhnhackl and Ross Johnston - suggesting that he will not play vs the Jets.
- Andrew Ladd practiced with the Islanders in a non-contact jersey on Saturday, his first on-ice session with the team since suffering a torn ACL on March 24th. Ladd was sporting a non-contact jersey and will for the foreseeable future, as his potential return isn't expected until late November.
- Sunday marks the Islanders second game of a three-game homestand to start the season. The Isles host the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday at NYCB Live - Nassau Coliseum.
- The Jets picked up their first win of the season on Friday night, scoring a dramatic 5-4 comeback win over the New Jersey Devils. The Jets trailed 4-0 with five minutes to play in the second period, but scored four unanswered goals en route to a shootout win.
- Unlike the Islanders, who returned six of their defensemen from last season, the Jets have undergone some major changes on the back end. Dustin Byfuglien is currently taking a leave of absence from the team, Jacob Trouba was traded to the New York Rangers for Neal Pionk and Tyler Myers signed with Vancouver in free agency. All three departed defensemen averaged over 20 minutes per game.
- The Jets will have Patrik Laine and Kyle Connor in the lineup for Sunday's game. Both restricted free agents signed contracts last week after missing a majority of training camp. Laine is a three-time 30-goal scorer, while Connor has netted 30 in each of the past two seasons.
- The Jets are making their first trip to Nassau Coliseum since Oct. 28, 2014.
- Sunday marks the third game of a four-game Eastern Conference road trip for the Jets. Winnipeg finishes their trip on Tuesday in Pittsburgh and play their first game at home on Thursday.
- UPDATE: Laurent Brossoit will start in goal for the Jets. Brossoit is 1-0-0 to start the season, stopping 35-of-39 shots against the Devils. Last season Brossoit went 13-6-2 with a 2.52 GAA, a .925 SV% and a shutout.